|Nguyễn Quang Tuấn, 56, former director of Hà Nội Heart Hospital appears in court.—VNA/VNS Photo Kim Anh|
HÀ NỘI — The former director of Hà Nội Heart Hospital has been sentenced to three years in prison for “violating regulations on bidding, causing serious consequences”.
The charge against Dr Nguyễn Quang Tuấn, 56, was announced on Friday after a five-day trial at the People’s Court of Hà Nội.
He was charged in accordance with the provisions of Article 222, Clause 3, under the Penal Code. He will not be banned from practicing after he has served his sentence.
The court determined that Tuấn committed the crime while the health sector faced many difficulties and the procurement of medical supplies could not be met in time due to shortcomings of legal regulations.
The court also said that it is a very serious case, infringing on the State's economic management order in the bidding for the procurement of medical equipment and supplies, affecting the reputation of the health sector and the hospital, causing insecurity among the people and going against the current fight against corruption.
Tuấn, who held the highest position at the hospital, has to take the highest responsibility for the violations, the court said.
However, the court pointed out that he was a leading doctor with high professional qualifications in the field of cardiology and was highly regarded by both domestic and international public opinion.
The court heard that during his work, he was awarded many noble medals, trained generations of doctors and saved many lives.
During the investigation and at the trial, Tuấn was sincere, especially repentant and actively re-mediate the consequences. He already returned US$10,000 that he received from Hoàng Nga Medical Equipment Joint Stock Company and VNĐ6 billion ($256,000).
These are believed to be extenuating circumstances to mitigate the sentence for him, the court said.
The court also said Tuấn’s violations are not related to his medical expertise, so it is necessary to consider mitigating his punishment than that proposed by the representative of the People’s Procuracy for him (the suggested sentence was from four to five years in prison) so that he can soon be returned to the community and contribute more to the health sector.
Also at the trial, 11 other defendants were handed sentences ranging from two years on probation to three and a half years in prison.
The court sentenced Nguyễn Thị Dung Hạnh, 54, former chief accountant of the hospital and head of the hospital’s finance and accounting office, to two years in prison.
Hoàng Thị Ngọc Hưởng, 62, former deputy director of the hospital; Đoàn Trọng Bình, 63, former deputy head of the hospital’s Medical Supplies Office; and Nghiêm Tuấn Linh, 43, former deputy head of the hospital’s Medical Supplies Office, were given a sentence of two years and a half in prison each.
Nguyễn Đức Đảng, 47, former chairman of the Board of Directors of Hoàng Nga Medical Equipment Joint Stock Company, was given three years and a half in prison; Phạm Huy Lập, 71, former director of the company, received a sentence of two and a half years’ probation; and Phạm Thị Kim Oanh, the former chief accountant of the company, was sentenced to two years in prison.
Phan Tuấn Đạt, 56, former chairman of the Board of Directors and former deputy director of Kim Hòa Phát Biotechnology Joint Stock Company, was given two years’ probation.
Trần Phú Hưng, 47, former deputy general director of AIC – Việt Nam Valuation and Investment Joint Stock Company, was sentenced two years and a half in prison; Nguyễn Hồng Dũng, 41, former deputy general director of the company, received a sentence of two years in prison; and Nguyễn Trung Dũng, 34, appraiser of the company, was given a sentence of 23 months and eight days in prison but was released as this was the same length of time he had spent in prison while awaiting the trial.
The indictment revealed that since 2015, Tuấn allowed the two companies to send medical supplies to be used in advance by the hospital. Tuấn, Đảng and Đạt knew each other before.
After extensive bidding procedures were legitimately completed, shortened bidding was designated, and Tuấn approved the decision for these two companies to win the contract for extensive packages in 2016 and four designated packages in 2017.
Defendants Tuấn, Hưởng, Hạnh, Linh and Bình abused their positions to illegally intervene in bidding activities.
These people colluded with the defendants at the two companies to carry out many violations from the bidding dossier, unit price, type, quantity of stents, and other medical supplies.
The defendants at the hospital colluded with the defendants at AIC to issue appraisal certificates at the request and a fixed price of the hospital, which Tuấn approved.
This ensured that the two companies won the bids and sold medical equipment in violation of the Procurement Law, causing more than VNĐ53.6 billion ($2.2 million) in damages to the hospital and the Social Insurance Fund in all five bidding packages mentioned above. — VNS